2016 Spring Quilt Market, Part 3


Welcome to Spring Quilt Market, Part 3, our final wrap up post of all things Quilt Market! We had such a great time walking the aisles , soaking in the vivid colors, new patterns, and basking in the glory of overwhelming creative inspiration. So, let’s dive right in!!

We absolutely adore working with Art Gallery Fabrics and had so much fun with the staff and amazing team of designers over Market weekend. We partnered with them on our Missing Market Giveaway and they popped by our booth for a quick tour and chat with Alex on Sunday.

Pictured here is lovely designer Amy Sinibaldi debuting her brand new collection with Art Gallery Fabrics, Playground. Her Aurifil thread collection, Sweetly Stitched, was released earlier this year and we just love how wonderfully her colors coordinate with her fabrics. To learn more about Amy and Sweetly Stitched, visit our collection announcement post.


Gorgeous booth display to feature Art Gallery Organics.


The amazing Pat Bravo simply glows with excitement in her booth. Here, she showcases two of her Aurifil collections, Rustic Vive and Intense Glow.


Sharon Holland shows off a stunning handmade dress along with her Aurifil thread collection, Color Story, available in both Large & Small. Sharon is such a huge Aurifil champion and we love seeing her creations!


Maureen Cracknell never fails to disappoint with her Market booths. We are in love with the Nightfall display to showcase her new Art Gallery collection. Here, she shows off Bohemian Garden, her last thread collection with Aurifil.


Susan Emory of Swirly Girl Designs had a wonderfully bright booth, showcasing the fabrics of her new collection for Michael Miller, Summer Lovin’. All arrows point to Aurifil in one of her displays!



Tula Pink also wows us with her displays. At Spring Market, she introduced her brand new show-stopping collection with Aurifil — a custom printed box of 45 Small Spools in a fabulous array of colors. The box coordinates particularly well with her new Free Spirit fabric collection, Slow & Steady, in the Strawberry color way.


We love seeing Lori Holt of Bee in my Bonnet. Alex took a moment to pop by to say hello and Lori, of course, had one of her Aurifil Happy Colors collections on hand to showcase! We simply adore the Cherries quilt!

Designer Jill Finley recently signed on with Riley Blake and was at Market to present her debut collection with them, Meadow Sweets. We had so much fun working on the coordinating thread box!

The Portage Lake BOM Quilt looks absolutely stunning on display. It uses fabrics from Minick & Simpson‘s new Moda fabric collection, Grand Traverse Bay, and threads from their brand new Aurifil thread collection, Portage Lake. To learn more about the BOM, head here.


We spotted this amazing quilt in the Moda Grunge booth. WOW!!! Katy Perry never looked so good!


We always love to see what Kate Spain has going on. This quilt is a stunning display of fabrics for her new Moda collection, Grand Canal.


Joanna Figueroa of Fig Tree Quilts shares a gorgeous collection of quilts in support of her latest collection, Chestnut.


Corey Yoder had the sweetest display of our threads in her Moda booth in support of her new collection Sundrops. Those colors make us want to dive right into Summer!

Darling Little Dickens by Lydia Nelson for Moda has us reminiscing about our younger years and we absolutely love the ‘I Love You’ quilt on the right. Wouldn’t that make the perfect baby gift?


We had a chance to visit with Heather Jones and Samantha Lindgren of A Gathering of Stitches. Heather put together a gorgeous booth to launch Color Dash, her debut collection with Robert Kaufman fabrics.  We are thrilled that she selected colors for a coordinating Aurifil thread collection.


How sweet is this kitty quilt in Erin Michael‘s booth for Moda?


Our new Creative Director, Erin Sampson, had a chance to share a quick hug with the amazing Pat Sloan. Pat is one of Aurifil’s biggest champions and we are ever grateful for her support (and for things like the Aurifil DOM, the Splendid Sampler and so much more!)


Felice Regina had the most amazing bursts of color in her booth for Luna Sol, her debut collection with Windham Fabrics. We love the bunny!

Kimberly Jolly of Fat Quarter Shop, It’s Sew Emma and Ruby Red Designs popped by the Aurifil booth to check out her debut thread collection, First Blush. True to the name, the collection showcases the sweetest lineup of colors, perfectly matched to the fabrics in her new collection with Windham Fabrics.


We missed meeting Aneela Hoey at Market, but were thrilled to see Foxglove, her new fabric collection with Cloud9 Fabrics. Don’t you just love how the threads are nestled into the display?


Annie Smith of Quilting Stash popped by to say hello and shared this quilt with us. WOW. The appliqué is simply perfect and the colors make us think of a perfect Spring day. Annie is a huge fan of our 28wt thread for appliqué.


Elisabeth Phillips of Island Batik came for a visit to talk about a handful of upcoming collections. We were proud to launch new collections for Island Batik designers Fourth and Sixth Designs, Claudia Pfeil, Kathy Engle, and Tammy Silvers at Spring Market.


And… that’s a wrap! Thank you so much for all who were able to pop by to say hello. We absolutely adore having a chance to see you all in person and are already looking forward to meeting in Houston.

For more information on our latest collections, keep an eye on our website. We just launched a brand new collection page and will be adding to it throughout the week.

Until next time!

2016 Spring Quilt Market


Spring Quilt Market kicked off at 9:30am on Friday, May 20 at the Salt Convention Center in Salt Lake City, UT and the Aurifil booth was filled with color. Not even the city-wide power outage the night before could dampen the mood.


Last year, we debuted a brand new booth featuring giant skiens of brightly colors threads along the outside walls. We noticed that some people had more fun with the threads than others;).

The booth was filled with thread rich displays…

Masterfully finished quilts…

And brand new Aurifil Designer Collections.

We even had a bit of fun with our logo on the outside wall!

We’d like to thank all who have stopped by to say hello. We’ve loved the opportunity to catch up, hear about your latest projects and your favorite threads. If you’re in Salt Lake and haven’t yet been by, we hope to see you today! We’ll be in Booth #901.

If you are sharing photos from Market and happen to spot our threads, please tag #Aurifil. We’d love to see them!

Happy Sunday:)



Uppercase by Janine Vangool


Janine Vangool’s debut collection for Windham Fabrics, UPPERCASE, is a collection of bright colors and geometric prints inspired by the spines from the many issues of her hugely popular UPPERCASE Magazine. Each issue of the magazine has featured a unique spine pattern with its own personality which Janine has taken and transformed into a fabric collection that showcases Uppercase’s truly unique style.

Janine’s coordinating Aurifil thread collection perfectly combines bold & bright colors with a handful of neutrals, making it an excellent collection not only for use with her fabric, but also in every day sewing & quilting.


[click on the image above to view the collection lookbook]

100% Aurifil Cotton, 50wt
Large – 1422yds each, 12 colors, Large Spools
1154 – 2277 – 2430 – 2140 – 5015 – 2860
5005 – 5006 – 2615 – 2625 – 2024 – 2692


For purchasing, please contact your local Aurifil Dealer.

Can you tell us a little more about yourself and how you came into this wonderful world of textile design?
I’ve had an eclectic creative career, from working as a freelance graphic designer to teaching to having a line of wholesale greeting cards to sewing products to running my own gallery and bookshop. In 2009, I launched UPPERCASE, a quarterly print magazine for the creative and curious. It combines everything that I’ve learned and loved over the years so now publishing is my main focus. Each issue of the magazine has a unique pattern that goes on the spine, cover and throughout the issue, so after many years I had quite a nice collection of patterns. Through some good fortune and nice connections, I was able to pitch the idea of turning them into textiles with Windham Fabrics.


When did UPPERCASE first launch and what was the driving inspiration behind its creation?  What do you most love about designing for, editing and publishing a print magazine?
Publication design—magazines and books—has always been my first love and is why I became a graphic designer. By producing my own publications, I have full control of the process from editorial through design through production. The magazine allows me to explore an infinite number of creative topics, so it is very inspiring and motivating.


How was the UPPERCASE spine design direction first determined and how did it inspire your debut fabric collection with Windham Fabrics?
The launch issue of the magazine had a polka-dot theme going on, so it was natural to start with an easy polka dot pattern. When conceiving of the first issue, I knew I wanted a magazine with some shelf presence—something with a bit of heft and width that could easily be identified on the shelf. The spine pattern and colour palette were developed with that in mind.


What was your favorite part about the process of designing a fabric collection? 
It was great to have a head start on the design process since I had dozens of designs from which to create the collection. I enjoyed refining the colour palette to the essence of what UPPERCASE is known for.


What first drew you to Aurifil threads and how did you go about putting your first collection together? 
I could scarcely believe my good luck to not only have my first fabric collection… but a collection of top quality threads, too? Pinch me! The colours were selected to coordinate with the UPPERCASE palette—either to blend well with the fabrics which are meant to be good basics for quilting, or to offer some exciting contrasting colours for top stitching and accents.

Do you have a go-to weight/color?
Not yet! I’m still new to the quilting world, so although I’ve admired for years, I’m only just learning how to quilt and am brushing up on my sewing skills. It’s fun!


Do you have any advice for designers who are just starting out? 
Keep working and trying and experimenting and failing and trying again. That’s the foundation for your future success.


To enter-to-win, simply click here to head to the Rafflecopter entry page, or simply click on the image above. You do not have to complete all the options to be entered but the more options you choose, the more entries you have!  Entries will be accepted from now through 11:59pm Eastern Time on Thursday, May 19! Winner will be randomly selected and announced here on Friday, May 20th. Good luck!

UPDATE (5/19): This Giveaway is now closed. Congratulations to our winner, Brenda Patton!!

Website — BlogFacebookInstagramFlickrVimeoTwitterPinterest
Janine Vangool is the publisher, editor and designer of UPPERCASE, a quarterly print magazine for the creative and curious. UPPERCASE publishes content inspired by design, typography, illustration and craft. Her magazine and books celebrate the process of making, the commitment to craft and the art of living creatively. Janine got her start working as a freelance graphic designer for arts and culture clients and has also taught typography and publication design at the college level. She has been a shop owner and bookseller, gallery curator, sold a line of greeting cards wholesale, made 10,000 books by hand (with lots of help!) and has sewn her own products for retail. She has a particular fondness for typewriters, a passion that has inspired a book about their graphic history. Her debut fabric collection is launching in June 2016 with Windham Fabrics. She is often asked, “Do you ever sleep?” To which she replies, “Yes! By the end of the day I’m exhausted!” She lives in Calgary, Canada with her board-game-designing husband and curious son.

[text pulled from UPPERCASE]

*All images by Kirstie Tweed

Luna Sol by Felice Regina


Aurifil is pleased to introduce brand new Aurifil Thread Collection Designer, Felice Regina of Sew Scatterbrained. Felice is an illustrator and designer living in Houston, TX. Her first collection for Windham Fabrics is inspired by her “spirit animal”, the mystical moon bunny. A vivid color spectrum recalls burning sunrises and calming sunsets. Geometric moon phases, ditzy florals, and sweet bunny faces bring balance to this whimsical collection. The coordinating Aurifil thread boxes are a perfect representation of the collection’s the fabulously rich and bold colors.

Luna Sol Lookbook, Windham Fabrics

[click on the image above to view the collection lookbook]

Luna Sol
100% Aurifil Cotton, 50wt
Large – 1422yds each, 12 colors, Large Spools
1154 – 1135 – 2040 – 2730 – 4655 – 1320 – 2588 – 4030 – 3660 – 2780 – 3920 – 2525


Small – 220 yds each, 10 Colors, Small Spools
1154 – 1135 – 2040 – 2730 – 1320 – 2588 – 4030 – 2780 – 3920 – 2525


For purchasing, please contact your local Aurifil Dealer.

What first inspired you to start sewing?
I’ve always had a strong internal motivation to make things. When I was in elementary school, I taught myself how to sew by hand using a book I bought with my allowance. I didn’t use a sewing machine until I was a junior in college. I had just gotten my first apartment and wanted to make some inexpensive curtains and pillows to decorate with.


What is your most beloved project finish and why?
My favorites are constantly changing, but right now, I’m in awe of of my Satellite Medallion quilt. It took a lot of energy to get it made in time for the Luna Sol look book. I don’t think I’ve ever put so much effort into the quilting process! When it was done, I knew it had to be on the cover of the look book.


When did you first start working as an illustrator? 
I’ve been drawing since I could hold a pencil.

How did you first connect with Windham Fabrics and what have you most loved about working through the collection design process? 
I met my fabric design idol, Heather Ross, at Quilt Con 2015 and she introduced me to the Windham family! I can’t even describe how wonderful they are to work with. I really enjoy the dialogue we have regarding putting the collection together. They’ve helped spark positive ideas and changes that I wouldn’t have come up with on my own.


What do you love most about Aurifil threads?
The color selection. I love pulling out my Aurifil color card and being able to find the perfect shade for my project. I’ve never been let down!


Do you have any advice for new designers out there?
Don’t let yourself be intimidated. Never limit yourself. Embrace failure.


To learn more about the Luna Sol collection, please visit Felice Regina & Windham Fabrics.



To enter-to-win, simply click here to head to the Rafflecopter entry page, or simply click on the image above. You do not have to complete all the options to be entered but the more options you choose, the more entries you have!  Entries will be accepted from now through 11:59pm Eastern Time on Wednesday, May 18! Winner will be randomly selected and announced here on Thursday, May 19th. Good luck!

UPDATE (5/19): This Giveaway is now closed. Congratulations to our winner, Susan Clarkson!!


Felice Regina is a 20-something illustrator/designer/maker from Houston, Texas. Since she was a child, her creative spirit and relentlessly curious nature has driven her to pursue making in many forms. Illustration and sewing happen to be her favorites.

As an adult who still sleeps with her baby blanket, Felice thinks she was primed to be a quilt fanatic. She made her first quilt in January 2014, and she now has more than she can count. She loves the marriage of artwork, function, and snugglability a quilt represents.

Felice graduated magna cum laude with a BA in Art and a minor in Business Administration from Trinity University in San Antonio in 2013. With her illustrated series “The Exiled Realm”, she won both the Trinity University 2013 senior award for Excellence in Art and the Ai Wei Wei Award at Trinity Art Collective’s 2012 Media Madness show. The series was also exhibited at Trinity’s Neidorff Gallery. Her photography was published in the 2010 Trinity Review. Her digital illustration “Closed for Cleaning” was featured in the MMORPG TERA Online from June to August 2013 as a winner of the “Loading Memories” contest.

Top Ten Tuesday {Mother’s Day}

Top Ten - Mother's Day

Though we truly believe that every day should be Mother’s Day, it’s lovely to have one day dedicated to showing our moms just how amazing they really are. This weekend (in the US), we take some time out to honor our real-life superheroes, our mentors, our best friends. We love going handmade for Mother’s Day and have rounded up a few favorite tutorials and gift ideas to inspire a bit of last minute stitching.

Happy Mother’s Day!!

1. Eye Mask — Tilly and the Buttons


2. Appliqué Hoop Art — Craftaholics Anonymous


3. Fabric Tortilla Warmer — Make It & Love It


4. Kitchen Towels — Sew4Home


5. Infinity Travel Scarf — Polkadot Chair

Screen Shot 2016-05-03 at 8.21.49 AM

6. Fabric Flower Bouquet — Lillabelle Lane for Penny Rose Fabrics


7. Well Traveled Sewing Book — nanaCompany


8. Tote — Noodlehead


9. Pixie Basket — Fabric Mutt


10. Goodie Goodie Binding Kit — Lella Boutique


Dixie by Allison Harris

AllisonHarris-CollectionPromoDixie, Allison Harris of Cluck Cluck Sew’s fourth collection with Windham Fabrics, follows in her signature style of bold foral prints and modern colors. Perfect for both traditional and modern quilters, this complementary follow up to her previous collection, Hazel, offers a new range of patterns that will inspire all sorts of Summer sewing.

Allison has curated a coordinating thread collection featuring Aurifil 50wt and the colors are absolutely perfect. We simply cannot wait to get get our hands on them!

We had a chance to chat with Allison about how she got started in this wonderful world of sewing & quilting and what she loves most about Aurifil. Read on for the interview and don’t miss our fabulous giveaway!

Dixie Lookbook

[click on the image above to view the collection lookbook]

100% Aurifil Cotton, 50wt
Large – 1422yds each, 12 Colors, Large Spools
2882 – 5018 – 1148 – 2830 – 2730 – 2250 – 2435 – 2415 – 5015 – 2024 – 2600- 4654


Small – 220 yds each, 10 Colors, Small Spools
2882 – 5018 – 1148 – 2830 – 2730 – 2250 – 2435 – 2415 – 5015 – 4654


For purchasing, please contact your local Aurifil Dealer.

You started quilting nearly 10 years ago. What first drew you to the craft?
My Mom quilted and sewed, so I grew up watching her and when I started having kids of my own I finally took the plunge and learned how to quilt.  It was love at first stitch!

Screen Shot 2016-04-28 at 9.41.02 AM

Since getting started, you’ve grown into a published author, pattern designer and fabric designer. Did you ever imagine this all happening when you first started and how do you feel this has changed your life for the better?
A lot of great things have happened in the past 9 years!  I feel blessed for every opportunity that has come my way, and no, I could have never imagined I’d be doing what I do now 9 years ago!  I sure love what I do, and I hope I get to design more, but also still enjoy sewing and quilting years down the road!   I feel more well rounded as an individual and mother by designing and working, and the opportunity to work from home while my kids are little is really the best.


Dixie is your fourth collection for Windham Fabrics. Does it feel different to create things using your own fabric?
Yes definitely!  A lot more thought goes into the projects when I’m working with my own fabric, and I can’t help but think about the design process as I sew with them…each one of those prints had to start somewhere!  It’s fun and amazing to watch them go from an idea or a sketch to real life fabric I can use!

AproninDixie-Allison Harris

What inspired this collection?
The inspiration for this collection came initially from a feedsack prints I bought at a swap meet while I lived in Ohio.  It has a more Southern feel to me, I can picture this collection being used for decor or quilts hanging out on a big screen porch in the South.  The colors are a bit more saturated than my last, but it’s also a summer collection…so the brighter the better and I love it!

Dixie by Allison Harris

What do you love most about Aurifil threads? Do you have a go-to color or thread weight?
Aurifil works like a dream in my sewing machines… and lasts forever!  My go-to is obviously my huge cones of white 2024 50 wt. for piecing…I’m always a little proud when I finally run out of a cone of thread!  My favorite color Aurifil is the 2830  (50 wt).  It’s a beautiful Aqua, Sea foam color that I use all the time!


What is your favorite project made with fabrics and threads from Dixie?
I’m actually sewing it right now… it’s a baby quilt for my daughter that is due in a couple of weeks!  It’s a project from my book Growing Up Modern and I’m quilting circles on it with the colored Aurifil from the Dixie collection…it’s been really fun to make!

Screen Shot 2016-04-28 at 9.55.19 AM

To learn more about the Dixie fabric collection, please visit Cluck Cluck Sew & Windham Fabrics.



To enter-to-win, simply click here to head to the Rafflecopter entry page, or simply click on the image above. You do not have to complete all the options to be entered but the more options you choose, the more entries you have!  Entries will be accepted from now through 11:59pm Eastern Time on Wednesday, May 4! Winner will be randomly selected and announced on Thursday, May 5th. Good luck!

UPDATE: This giveaway is now closed. Congratulations to our winner, Donna Widerquist!!

WebsiteShopFacebookInstagram — Pinterest
Allison started this blogging in 2007 as a way to keep record of the things she was making. She also started quilting around that time, so her blog has followed her journey from a brand new quilter, to a quilter that sort of knows what she’s doing.  Sort of.  Blogging is her first love, but she also writes and publishes quilt patterns, authors and contributes to quilting books and magazines, and designs fabric sold in quilt shops.Allison lives a ferry ride away from Seattle with her husband and three small kids.  She work as a Dental Hygienist here and there, but mainly stays at home with her family now and enjoys this quilty stuff.  She also loves visiting beaches around her house, anything with sugar, wandering around Target alone,  raising bunnies (see this post…so cute!), and long lazy naps (but who doesn’t?).[text adapted from Cluck Cluck Sew]

Showcase Sunday {4.24}


Welcome back to Showcase Sunday, our bi-weekly forum to showcase the beautiful work that all of you do! We’ve seen some magnificent images of what you’ve been creating over the past two weeks and we’re thrilled to share some of them here today. Keep tagging us and sharing your work and we’ll feature some of our favorites here every other Sunday. Don’t forget to check in on Facebook & Instagram to see more! Happy Stitching!!

(Click on any image below to learn more via the the artist’s instagram.)





















Karen Lewis Textiles

Karen Lewis’s debut collection for Robert Kaufman features her signature screen printing overprinted onto Kona® cotton solids. Blueberry Park is an excellent representation of her passion for textiles, pattern, and color, featuring a wide array of bold and bright colors with uniquely printed patterns. We’ve been fans of Karen’s work for quite some time and were so incredibly thrilled by the opportunity to create a coordinating thread collection.  We had a chance to chat with her a bit about her process and what she loves most about this collection. Read on for a sneak peek into Karen’s world, and don’t miss out on the AMAZING giveaway!


Karen Lewis Textiles
100% Aurifil Cotton, 50wt
Large – 1422yds each, 12 Colors, Large Spools
Small – 220 yds each, 10 Colors, Small Spools

For purchasing, please contact your local Aurifil Dealer.



Tell us a bit about yourself and how you first came into this amazing world of textiles?
I have always been a crafter thanks to my very creative Grandma but it was always a hobby that I drifted in and out of. After I became a Mum of 3, I took a break from my career as a teacher and went back to sewing on a more regular basis. This was around the time that the internet took off along with social media and it was very easy to see what crafters and communities all around the globe were up to. I was very drawn to discovering screen printed fabrics and bought them from designers and makers in Australia and South Africa to use in my sewing.


When did you first start screen-printing and was there a particular ‘aha’ moment that you just knew it was what you wanted to do?
I started screen printing about 5 years ago. I loved sourcing and using printed textiles. As my now formed textile business was developing I knew I wanted to design and use my own fabrics to make my work more identifiable as me. I booked onto a screen printing course at my local studio and literally from the first minute I was completely and utterly hooked! I loved the whole process and haven’t looked back since.


You’ve been working with your own screen-printed fabrics for quite some time… how did the partnership with Robert Kaufman first come about and what has that process been like for you?
I was using a lot of Kona cottons in my work, printing directly over the top of them. One day it came to the attention of the peeps at Kaufman who loved what I was doing. It really was a dream come true having my designs put onto yardage. RK made the whole process a really positive one and I just love the result we have created together. Right from the beginning, RK focused on the fact that I am a hand printer and wanted to recreate the same technique but on a larger scale. I just love the fact that my fabrics are an overprint, just like they are when I personally print them by hand. It feels like a natural and true reflection of my work.


What is your favorite thing about ‘Blueberry Park’? Do you have a favorite print or colorway?
What a hard question! I think my favourite print wold have to be Allotments because of it’s versatility. It is really about 9 prints in 1! I also have a big soft spot for Scruffy Daisy as it was my very first print that I ever designed. As for colours, by the fact that I struggled to narrow down Kona’s 330 colours to just 70 for the collection tells you how hard that was!

Are you still running screen-printing workshops and what is your favorite thing about sharing your passion with a classroom full of eager students?
Yes, I am very busy with running workshops. It seems everyone wants to learn to screen print and I am certainly a big advocate of spreading the love! I am a teacher by training so I have always been passionate about passing on skills. The thing I love most about teaching is seeing the students’ enthusiasm as they succeed in turning a design into a print. The whole experience is infectious.


What is one piece of advice that you give students who are just starting out?
Give yourself time to develop your skills and style. Screen printing itself isn’t a difficult process but putting everything together and progressing doesn’t happen over night. Enjoy the journey!

What first drew you to Aurifil threads?
To me, Kona and Aurifil go hand in hand. Aurifil, like Kona, offers such diversity whilst being the best quality you can buy. I love that about Aurifil, that you have so much choice without compromising on quality.


How did you go about selecting colors for your first Aurifil thread box and what was that experience like for you? Do you have a favorite colour?
I had to have a silver in there as that is my go to colour when I don’t want a colour per se. As for the rest I wanted to pick colours across the rainbow spectrum that most compliment the fabrics from the collection that I use the most. The collection came together pretty easily really, although it was hard to leave 2 out for the small box! I had so much fun picking the colours and like the Kaufman fabric collection it is such a thrill for me to have my own box. I can’t thank you guys enough!


Thank YOU Karen:)

THE GIVEAWAYKarenLewis-Rafflecopter

To enter-to-win, simply click here to head to the Rafflecopter entry page, or simply click on the image above. You do not have to complete all the options to be entered but the more options you choose, the more entries you have!  Entries will be accepted from now through 11:59pm Eastern Time on April 27th! Winner will be randomly selected and announced on Thursday, April 28th. Good luck!

UPDATE: This giveaway is now CLOSED. Congratulations to our winner, Roxanne Hartwig! 

WebsiteBlog — Instagram — FacebookRK Designer Page
Karen was born and brought up in Leeds, West Yorkshire in the UK where she learned to sew and knit with her grandmother. It was several years later, after turning her back on her formal education and teaching career, that she came back to her crafting roots.

While living and teaching in London, Karen met her husband and together they brought up their 3 children there, but when they moved back to Leeds in 2004, she left her teaching career behind and started her crafting business Blueberry Park. Karen always had a passion for textiles, pattern and color and after a brief silkscreen printing course in 2011, she set about teaching herself more about this technique in order to design her own fabric.

Karen’s obsession with screen printing set in and soon she was printing and designing all day, every day perfecting her skills. She was using her fabrics in her own work as well as selling it to other quilters and crafters.

With her passion for screen printing and her skills as a teacher, she started to run screen printing workshops, passing on her skills and teaching others how to design fabric and screen print, particularly at home with little specialist equipment and space. In 2014 Karen brought out her first book Screen Printing at home, teaching the reader all they need to know and what to do to produce great screen prints from the kitchen table.

Karen is also a prolific quilter and her work is regularly seen in Love Patchwork and Quilting as well as Quilt Now magazines. As well as running workshops in her home in Leeds, she has taught at the Fat Quarterly Retreat and around the UK. Blueberry Park is her first collection with Robert Kaufman. — text via Robert Kaufman

Aurifil 2016 April Designer of the Month Kate Spain

Aurifil 2016 Design Team April Kate Spain collage

I’m Designer, Author, Radio show host Pat Sloan. We are finally in spring in my part of the world and our April Designer is the amazing Kate Spain!

The quilt world is so lucky to have the talented Kate Spain design gorgeous Moda fabrics and curate yummy Aurifil thread collections for us! She designs for many places, you can find rugs, stationary and much more with her beautiful patterns on it.

We have become good friends over the years and I’m really happy she is on our design team for 2016!  You can listen to my chat with Kate on my talk show.. —>  3/17/14 click to  listen

Pat Sloan enter your aurifil block.jpg

PLEASE READ — We are CHANGING something!!

Our Monthly quilt block Challenge will now be at my website with a Photo sharing party! This will be much easier for everyone.  If you want to look first, It’s HERE

We LOVE our MONTHLY thread BOX giveaway (seriously folks… you could win a box of my thread which is over $120.00 value.. JUST for making a quilt block… you have to join in!). Each month we pick one random winner that has made a  block from our featured designer of the prior month. That person receives a FULL BOX of my Aurifil thread as the prize!

Grab your Kate Spain fabric and let’s get to know her!

Continue reading

SCHMETZ Needles, Part 1

Using the right needle in your sewing and quilting is just as important as using the right thread. The two are gorgeously intertwined, so to give you the best information possible, we went straight to the source. Today we’re thrilled to share the first in a two-part guest series by Rhonda Pierce of SCHMETZ Needles.  Thank you, Rhonda!

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

You acquired an amazing collection of fabrics for a quilt you have been itching to start.  You selected beautiful Aurifil thread.  Your sewing machine is newly cleaned.  Now… what needle should you use?  SCHMETZ of course!  No other needle can match the quality and variety of needle types and sizes.  Let’s review specific needle types, because even though SCHMETZ manufacturers 17 different needle types for home sewing, my travels and conversations with quilters have taught me that there are really five SCHMETZ needles frequently loved by quilters.

What’s YOUR Favorite Needle?

What’s YOUR Favorite Needle?

  • Topstitch and Metallic:  Needles with an extra-long eye.  This is important to know because there is less friction on the thread as it passes through the eye.  Less friction means less thread breakage or shredding.
  • Microtex:    When precision stitches are a must!  This needle has a very slim acute point that works well with all cottons and especially batiks.  Use the Microtex for applique, piecing and quilting.
  • Quilting:  Just as the name suggests, use this needle for piecing and quilting.  The Quilting needle has a special taper designed for easier fabric penetration and elimination of skipped stitches.
  • Jeans/Denim: Surprised to see this?  Well for all those raggy quilts made from flannel this is a great choice, because the Jeans needle has a reinforced blade to penetrate through heavier fabrics with less needle deflection.
  • Universal:  This work horse needle does it all and very well, but many times one of the above needle types will result in a more precise stitch.  With SCHMETZ, you have options!
The Dynamic Duo! SCHMETZ Microtex 70/10 & Aurifil 50 wt

The Dynamic Duo! SCHMETZ Microtex 70/10 & Aurifil 50 wt

After determining the needle type, decide on the needle size.  My rule of thumb is the 40/80 rule.  When using a 40wt thread use a  80/12 needle.  For a finer thread, use a smaller needle size.  If using a heavier thread, use a 90/14 or larger needle.  Sometimes experimentation is needed because fabrics have different weights and finishes.  My favorite needle for piecing is SCHMETZ Microtex 80/12.  Last year I ran into a situation where the needle pushed the fabric into the throat plate.  How odd!  I was using the Aurifil 50wt Quilting & Embroidery thread.  I tried another Microtex 80/12 and the same thing happened.  I then tried a Microtex 70/10 and … Voilà!  The fabric and machine loved this needle and thread combination… like sewing through butter.  Just changing the needle size made a huge difference in my sewing experience.

Next time you buy Aurifil thread from your favorite quilt shop, remember to pick up a couple packs of SCHMETZ needles.  If you are like me, there is nothing more irritating than being in the sewing groove at 2AM and not having the right needle.

For more information visit www.SCHMETZneedles.com.  Check out the videos, especially videos 3, 4 and 5 on how to read the needle package, needle selection and clues to change the needle.  While on the site download the SCHMETZ Color Chart for easier needle identification by type and size.  iPhone users can download the free SCHMETZ App.  The Android SCHMETZ App is expected soon.

— Rhonda

To view Part 2 of this series, please click here 
– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

RP15-125-sendRhonda Pierce has a dream job . . . teaching sewing and quilting enthusiasts about the most important 2” piece of steel in the sewing machine – the SCHMETZ needle.  As  spokesperson for www.SCHMETZneedles.com and Marketing Director for Euro-notions, Rhonda enjoys sharing needle knowledge in classrooms and sewing shows throughout North America.  She is delighted with the ingenuity and remarkable creations that sewing enthusiasts share.  Next time you see Rhonda with her SCHMETZ “Super” Needle, it’s 17” tall, tell her which SCHMETZ needle is your favorite.

SCHMETZ online:
WebsiteBlog — FacebookPinterestYouTubeInspired to Sew